|Ticket sales were down on England's second round 3-0 defeat of Denmark two weeks ago, and over the two bank holiday days of the golden jubilee at the beginning of June, Ms Thompson told a culture, media and sport select committee of MPs.|
Thompson said players had tended to stay away during the long bank holiday weekend of the jubilee.
The Camelot CEO also defended her remarks that players would be “lucky” to win money on the main lottery game, Lotto, saying that her remarks had been taken out of context. The gaffe had been widely criticized in the press. Asked whether her remarks had had any impact on sales, she told MPs: “It is hard to tell. I don't think so. The problem with the national lottery is that you cannot judge it week on week.”
Camelot has expressed concern at recommendations in the Budd report on gambling which would allow for `side betting’ on Lotto - in which people bet on which numbers will come up, with a higher chance of winning. Similar bets are popular in UK betting shops on the Irish Lottery. Camelot was also concerned at the Budd report’s recommendations on deregulation of bingo and the liberalisation of society lotteries - those which are run by charities.
The UK’s Culture Secretary, Tessa Jowell, is examining options including nationalization of the lottery and splitting games between different operators, after the seven-year renewal of Camelot’s license was widely criticized.